Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “What a Woman Desires” as Want to Read:
What a Woman Desires
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

What a Woman Desires

3.67  ·  Rating details ·  75 ratings  ·  36 reviews
From country girl to actress of the stage, one woman dares to live her dreams—but is she brave enough to open her heart…?

Monica Danes always wanted more than the village of Biddlestone had to offer. After a failed courtship to a man of her parents’ choosing, she fled for the city of Bath and never looked back. Today, Monica is the undisputed queen of the theater—a wealthy,
Kindle Edition, 280 pages
Published January 5th 2015 by Lyrical Press
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about What a Woman Desires, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about What a Woman Desires

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.67  · 
Rating details
 ·  75 ratings  ·  36 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of What a Woman Desires
Dec 27, 2014 rated it it was amazing
4.5 rating
I was swept away yet again by Rachel Brimble’s world building!

This time the author took me to Biddlestone, the place actress Monica Danes had cut her virtual bounds from with no regret. Or maybe just one? In her haste to flee from the control of her over-bearing parents and the ramifications of their meddling ways, Monica had to push her feelings for Thomas Ashby, her father’s groom, aside, in a bid to escape to the city which she loves. When she’s given news about her father’s death,
Nov 07, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I enjoyed reading this wonderful book by Rachel Brimble. She is a remarkable storyteller which keeps the reader wanting to know more. This book has characters that seem real with faults and desires all their own.
Monica Danes is the oldest sister in the little village of Biddlestone. She has always wanted more in her life. When Monica turns down her parent's choice of husband, she flees to Bath. There she works hard to become the actress in a theater and severed ties to her family. It took five
Jan 08, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Although I’m a reader of all genres, historicals are never my first choice. That said, Rachel Brimble scored an absolute winner with me and What a Woman Desires.

I’m not sure the reasons behind my reluctance to reach for the historical romances but I think it’s mostly to do with my lack of knowledge on most period times. However, there are a few books/authors in this genre where timings do not matter as you become so swept up in the characters, everything else becomes irrelevant. In this instance
Nov 06, 2014 rated it really liked it
What a Woman Desires by Rachel Brimble is a charming second chance at love romance. This well-written historical love story is full of angst but the sweet ending makes all the drama worthwhile.

Monica Danes left home five years earlier to pursue her dream of becoming an actress despite her parents' disapproval. She has had no contact with her parents or her sister Jane in the intervening years, but when she learns of her father's death, Monica returns home for his funeral. Intending to leave as s
Susan Parkes
Dec 07, 2014 rated it it was amazing
If you want a book that keeps you guessing till the end with - will they or won't they?, then this is it. Rachel kept my attention with her wonderful writing skills all the way through this book, it is a definite 5 star read and I did not want it to end.

Monica and Thomas, are the two main characters and they have had feelings for each other from when they were young but with Thomas being the family groom, a romance between them was just not allowed - she was above his station.

So Monica after a
Jan 14, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Monica Danes left home five years earlier to pursue her dream of becoming an actress despite her parents' disapproval. She has had no contact with her parents or her sister Jane in the intervening years, but when she learns of her father's death, Monica returns home for his funeral. Intending to leave as soon as possible, Monica is torn between duty and desire but it is her love for Thomas Ashby, her family's Jack of all trades, that causes her the most turmoil,as before she left they were in lo ...more
Jan 10, 2015 rated it it was amazing
What a Woman Desires is a fantastic read! I am really enjoying historical romance novels at the moment and will happily add Rachel Brimble to my ever-growing list of brilliant historical fiction writers.

I thought that the character development and all the plot twists and turns were extremely well mastered by the author. The tension and drama between Monica and Thomas is noticeable from the first few pages onwards. As much as I loved these two, I sometimes also felt slightly frustrated with them
Jan 09, 2015 rated it really liked it
Originally posted on

Monica Danes escaped to the city of Bath and became the star of the stage. She escaped a life of social climbing and, in the process, escaped the clutches of a violent man who had been matched to her by her parents. Now, Monica is known throughout the city. Her pretty face graces the posters that advertise the theatre's latest shows, and she's more beautiful than ever, now that she's living the life that she loves with a passion. When Rach
Jan 04, 2015 rated it really liked it

(actual rating 4.5)

Posted here

What A Woman Desires is a fascinating, dramatic Victorian romance and another winner of a novel by Rachel Brimble. Monica Danes is called upon to return to Biddestone after learning about the death of her father. She’s forced to return to the place she was so desperate to leave, from Bath where she is now a popular theatre star. She’s eager to leave Biddestone again as soon as possible but there’s one man determined to stop
Terri Rochenski
Dec 10, 2014 rated it really liked it
*I received a copy for an honest review*

I'm leaning toward 4.5* on this one.

Ms. Brimble knows how to create conflict. This is the 2nd title of her's that I've read, and once again, she didn't disappoint. Inner and external for not just the MCs, but supporting cast as well is clear and believable.

The setting is rich. Spot on. In 3D detail, I got swept right up in hearing, seeing, smelling each scene. LOVE when that happens!!!

Plot is perfect for an independent woman of the 19th century desperate
Oh the second chance romance: we all have someone that will always be in the ‘what if’ pile, and Rachel Brimble gives us a lovely look at Monica’s chance to get her answers. In a lovely twist that isn’t embroiled in the Tonne and the social atrophy of that set, this Victorian era story has lots of elements to make it unique.

Monica is the eldest daughter, and while she longs for a life more exciting than her small village of Biddlestone, she doesn’t act on those feelings until a potential husban
Robyn Koshel
Jan 10, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I was not sure what to expect when I first saw this title, but I was hooked on the first chapter. Monica and Thomas are such great characters. There was so much tension between them- I loved every minute of their romance. Both characters are deeply flawed, but that just added to their appeal and gave their development an emotive depth.

There are so many levels to this book, from romance to family dramas, and Rachel Brimble really throws her heart and soul into this magnificent novel. 5 stars may
Stephanie Cage
Dec 29, 2014 rated it it was amazing
So nice to read a historical novel with a heroine who's strong and gutsy, without being insanely anachronistic. Monica Danes left Biddestone for the bright lights of Bath's Theatre Royal after a distressing incident with an unsuitable suitor. She's vowed never to go back, and the only thing that could change her mind is the knowledge that after her father's death, her mother and sister desperately need her help. Still, she plans to make her visit as brief as possible, but fate has other plans fo ...more
Margaret Sholders
Jan 05, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Boy, this book took me on one wild ride! This is the first time reading Rachel's books. She really draws you to her characters. They all seem to pop out at you. They made it hard to put down. She also came up with a very busy story line. There was a bit of redundancy but you needed it to refresh your memory in places. It was too bad people back then couldn't be as open as today. It would have saved a lot of anguish in this story. This is a good read I would recommend to everyone who likes good r ...more
Jan 06, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Monica always knew she wanted more than to get married and stay in the village of Biddlestone. She dreamed of bigger things and ran away to find them. When tragedy strikes she is forced to go home and confront her past. Will her choices be the same as they were before? A wonderful story, the characters really draw you in. I loved the story it kept me entertained throughout. Enjoy.
Cas H.
Dec 31, 2014 rated it really liked it
What a Woman Desires by Rachel Brimble is an amazingly written story about a woman who has made a life for herself. She left home, and decided to become what she wanted to become. She made her life in the theatre and Monica wants to continue that life without anything getting in the way. Unfortunately her father dies and Monica must return home to take care of her mother and sister.
All Monica ever wanted in her life was someone to love her. Thomas Ashby has always loved her from afar. He is a g
Jan 11, 2015 rated it really liked it
Read my review on by clicking on the link below:
Wendy Jones
Jan 12, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: historical
Liked this book. Historical romance set in and around Bath strangely had more of an American feel to me, but that aside, the story itself was good.
May 21, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This book pulled at my heart strings. I think I felt so many different emotions as I read it. I never saw the ending to this book until the last chapter. I really enjoyed reading this and recommend it. It is a historical romance yet so many issues in this book are current.
Jun 03, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Every normal woman has dreams, even those who are already married to the wealthiest of men, yes even those have a little side line dream of something or someone that would make them happy. In this absolutely beautifully crafted read from the multi talented Rachel Brimble we meet Monica Danes. She has always wanted more than what the village of Biddlestone had to offer. After a failed courtship to the man of her parent's choosing , she fled for the city of Bath and never looked back. Now she grac ...more
May 03, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: bur-2015
In the five years since leaving her home at 18, Monica Danes has discovered her self-worth, personal power and embraced her own forward thinking ideas. She is looking for unconditional love, something she has never known. She finds temporary adoration each time she takes the stage, yet something is still missing. Monica refuses to be a possession of any man, to marry for power or position in society.

Thomas Ashby takes his position in the Danes household very seriously. His responsibility to the
Mary Woodruff
Jun 12, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: everyone
Recommended to Mary by: Rachel Brimble
Totally loved Thomas Ashby and Monica Danes. You can tell the author did her research. Since Thomas is below Monica's station, he has one last chance to prove himself worthy. And to show her a life and love she wont want to give up.

I gave this 5 stars.
Sep 01, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 200-to-299-pages
I enjoy love stories where the What the Woman Desires turns out to be the man that is steady from her hometown and he proves he is worthy of her love.
Jan 06, 2015 rated it really liked it
Kindle Copy for Review

One country girl living her dreams on stage is force to return home. Can she do what is right and find love in her heart?

Monica Danes left her small town roots with a prospective handsome man that her parents approved of to a life in Bath. But all is not what it seems as her prospective husband true colours started to show as he became abusive towards her. Finally getting away from her she finds herself on stage and enjoying her life. Her parents thinks her life is scandalo
Sonya Heaney
I had two strong reactions to this book early on:

1.YAY! The Victorian era (late Victorian – 1897)! And not only the Victorian era, but the characters aren’t aristocrats. I’m in Heaven!

2.I want to throw rotten tomatoes at the book’s editor! The author is English and the book is set in England. I was seriously annoyed by the Americanisation of not only some of the dialogue, but also the Americanisation of the spelling of place names. GRR.

Call me ignorant, but I had no idea Rachel Brimble wrote his
Connie Fischer
Dec 24, 2014 rated it liked it
Bath, England - 1897

Monica Danes, a star with Bath’s Royal Theater, has just received a letter from her younger sister, Jane, that her father has died. In addition, her mother who has always been an angry woman, appears to be losing her mind. Monica’s father was a harsh man who had tried to make her marry Malcolm Baxter. There was a time when Monica thought herself in love with the man, but events changed that. It has been five years since she left home and she has no returned since.

Monica’s fam
Romancing the Book
Jul 04, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: historical, romance
Reviewed by JoAnne
Book provided by NetGalley
Originally posted at Romancing the Book

I had previously read a novella by this new to me author and it left me wanting more. I’m glad I gave her another chance and this time it’s a full length novel that kept my interest from beginning to end.

When we first meet up with Monica Danes she’s in her element – being an actress in Bath, England – and then she gets the note from her sister that her father has died. Being that she’s been estranged from her fami
Arec Rain
Sep 15, 2017 rated it really liked it
I love historical romance but sometimes they all seem the same. Don’t get me wrong, sometimes it’s not a bad thing, like revisiting an old friend after not seeing them for a while. There may be subtle differences, but overall, nothing has truly changed. Therefore, when I find a historical romance that sticks out for whatever reason, it excites me.

Rachel Brimble’s novels interested me greatly because they promised something different. Prostitutes, actresses and village girls? These aren’t the us
Nov 12, 2014 rated it liked it
What a Woman Desires was a delightful historical romance that I really enjoyed. A sweet story about a couple who had loved each other for years and were finally getting a chance to be together, it was a nice read.

Monica was certainly an independent character. She was determined to find her own way of happiness but she also cared about the tenants on her family's estate. My only issue with her was that she tended to think in absolutes and that made her come across as selfish a couple of times. It
Ann Lorz
Jan 06, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: historical
This is the first time I've read a book by Rachel Brimble but it won't be the last. She wrote a wonderful story that kept me turning the pages. Great characters!
« previous 1 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 2 Mar 12, 2015 01:08PM  

Readers also enjoyed

  • Heavenward (Celestial Creatures, #1)
  • As Luck Would Have It
  • The Things I Know
  • Reach for the Stars
  • The House By The Loch
  • Tell the Truth
  • The Girl in the Ragged Shawl (The Children of the Workhouse #1)
  • Resort to Murder
  • The Riviera Express (A Miss Dimont Mystery, #1)
  • Flawed (Imperfectly Perfect, #1)
  • The Rival
  • The Winter Orphan (The Children of the Workhouse, Book 3)
  • The Barefoot Child (The Children of the Workhouse, #2)
  • The Garden Club Murder
  • The Dead Line
  • Meet Me at Pebble Beach
  • Escape to the French Farmhouse: The most refreshing, feel-good story of the summer
  • The Waffle House on the Pier
See similar books…
I live with my husband, our two daughters in a small market town near the famous Georgian City of Bath. I'm the author of the Pennington's Department series (Aria Fiction) and the Templeton Cove series (Harlequin) as well as four Victorian romances with eKensington/Lyrical.

When I’m not writing, you’ll find me with my head in a book or walking the beautiful English countryside with my family. And i

Related Articles

Fans of Sarah MacLean know her as a writer of historical romances, a passionate defender of the romance genre, and a creator of some truly pun-tast...
15 likes · 2 comments